Washington – Today Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-05) announced that the President has issued a major disaster declaration for Lake County for the Ranch and River Fires, commonly known as the Mendocino Complex fires. This declaration allows federal funds to be available to help Lake County survivors recover and rebuild from the Mendocino Complex fires, which began on July 27, 2018 and continue to burn across the region. This includes Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Individual Assistance funding that will be available to individuals to allow them to rebuild and repair homes and structures that were damaged or destroyed and replace housing and other property that are not covered by insurance.
“For the fourth year in a row, Lake County has been battered by fire, but once again our community is demonstrating its strength and resiliency in full force. Today’s announcement is another important step on our road to recovery,” said Thompson. “These funds are a critical part of helping our community return to normal and rebuild once again. Thank you to all in our delegation who joined my call for this critical support and to firefighters, first responders, and law enforcement who continue to put their lives on the line to contain this destructive blaze. The path to rebuild has been made that much clearer today.”
Individuals who may be eligible for individual assistance should apply through one of the following options:
- Apply by phone to FEMA: 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). Disaster assistance applicants, who have a speech disability or hearing loss and use TTY, should call 1-800-462-7585 directly; for those who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 1-800-621-3362. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 4 a.m. to 8 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time seven days a week until further notice.
- You can also apply online anytime at www.DisasterAssistance.gov.
- By smartphone or tablet, use www.fema.gov.
On August 7, 2018, Thompson, along with Reps. John Garamendi and Jared Huffman, lead a bipartisan letter to the President urging him to approve the disaster declaration and make these funds available to fire survivors. Thompson has prepared a Disaster Guide to help constituents navigate the recovery process that you can read. You can find the option to download the PDF at the end of this article.
The Mendocino Complex fires began on July 27, 2018 and have burned over 378,000 acres and is currently 76 percent contained. Over 300 structures were damaged or destroyed 1,025 structures are still threatened. Thousands have been forced to evacuate.